The House on Mango Street

Only available on StudyMode
  • Download(s) : 166
  • Published : April 15, 2008
Open Document
Text Preview
How Important is Beauty in One’s Life?
“Someday, I will have a best friend all my own. One I can tell my secrets to. One who will understand my jokes without me having to explain them” (9). These are the longing words spoken by Esperanza. In the novel The House on Mango Street, Esperanza is young girl experiencing adolescence not only longing for a place to fit in but also wanting to be beautiful. This becomes complicated as Esperanza becomes more sexually aware. Throughout the novel, Cisneros argues the importance of beauty and how Esperanza deals with beauty as a part of her identity. When Esperanza meets Sally a new friend, Esperanza’s whole world is turned upside down. Esperanza’s views on beauty change from a positive outlook to a negative one by watching how beauty has damaged Sally’s life. Cisneros brings beauty into Esperanza’s self -discovery in “Beautiful and Cruel” when Esperanza says “I am an ugly daughter I am the one nobody comes for” (88). This quote helps support Cisneros’s argument of beauty and self identity because it expresses why Esperanza is drawn back from associating with boys; she feels that the “ugly” girls are not necessarily what boys are looking for. Esperanza views her self unattractive and insignificant this becomes apparent in “Four Skinny Tress” when Cisneros gives the reader an inside of how Esperanza feels about her outside appearance. She views herself as and someone out of place just like the trees outside her house. Esperanza unlike the other girls at school is not getting a great deal of attention from any of the boys at school. Which leads to Esperanza feeling left out and unattractive. Esperanza describes the four trees as “the only ones who understand me”, because she is unable to relate to the “beautiful” girls (74). Esperanza, like many adolescence has low self esteem yet longs to be noticed, beautiful and understood. Cisneros uses the characters Marin and Sally to portray Esperanza’s admiration of sexual...
tracking img